Cendant units forecast strong car rental, hotel, resort and travel portal bookings for July 4th weekend and first half of summer
New York, NY
Jul 1, 2004
As America prepares for July 4th celebrations and summer travel, one of the largest travel companies in the world announced today that the U.S. travel market is poised for a very strong summer. Cendant Corporation – whose more than 30 travel companies include Avis®, CheapTickets®, Days Inn®, Budget Rent A Car®, Howard Johnson®, Traveler’s Advantage®, Cuendet®, Holiday Network® and Galileo® – announced today that many of its units are seeing more than 10 percent year-over-year increases in bookings.
Continued Growth Seen in Reservations for Summer Months
The following are trend highlights reported by Cendant’s travel businesses:
Car Rentals: Advance reservations at Avis and Budget, combined, are up more than 10 percent for July 4th weekend and nearly five percent for July as a whole. Originating international markets showing particularly robust July demand for car rentals in the United States include Mexico (up 40 percent) and France (up 24 percent). Domestically, high growth cities include Philadelphia and Seattle, up 24 percent and 25 percent, respectively (2004 vs. 2003). The Avis and Budget companies operated by Cendant Car Rental Group serve roughly one-third of all airport-based car renters in the United States
Hotels: Advanced bookings across all brands are up five percent this summer, with the Days Inn brand reporting a seven percent increase for July and AmeriHost Inn seeing a 14 percent increase. Most growth has been through the Internet with an approximately 50% increase in direct, online bookings year-over-year across all brands. Cendant’s franchised hotels sell nearly one out of every four economy and mid-priced room nights in the United States, and Cendant franchises 11 percent of the entire U.S. hotel room supply.
Online Travel: Travel through CheapTickets.com is expected to increase about 50 percent year-over-year for the July 4 th weekend and the entire month of July. Customized vacation packages are in great demand this July. Sales of such packages by CheapTickets.com for the July 4th holiday are up more than 100 percent over 2003. The most popular markets include Orlando, Las Vegas, Hawaii, San Francisco and Los Angeles. In addition to selling more packages, the average number of nights per package has also grown, from an average of five nights last July 4 th, to an average of six nights this year. CheapTickets.com currently has seven-night Los Angeles vacation packages departing from Newark starting from $578 (savings of 59%).
Source: Smith Travel Research and Cendant financial data. Cendant hotels brands include AmeriHost Inn, Days Inn, Howard Johnson, Knights Inn, Ramada, Super 8, Travelodge, Villager Lodge and Wingate Inn.
Travel Agencies: Galileo, one of the world’s largest global distribution systems powering more than 44,000 travel agencies, forecasts nine percent growth in travel segments for the month of July. Galileo’s traditional travel agency clients continue to see demand for their one-stop shopping services as evidenced by continued growth in bookings.
Travel Clubs: Traveler’s Advantage – a travel membership company that saves members money on air travel, cruises, car rentals and accommodations – forecasts an 11 percent spike in bookings for July.
Vacation Rentals: The companies of Cendant Vacation Rental Group (VRG), including Cuendet (cuendet.com), report that bookings from U.S. residents traveling to Europe are up 27 percent this summer versus last year. This increased percentage applies almost equally throughout the booking season including the July holiday weekend, suggesting that Americans are traveling again. Headquartered in London, VRG offers consumers 20 different vacation rental brands with a total of 50,000 properties, including vacation homes, condominiums, apartments, villas, cottages and houseboats, located in 22 countries across Europe.
- Holiday Network, Cendant’s U.S.-based vacation rental company, is also experiencing strong growth in bookings for a vast majority of destinations in July. This growth can be attributed in part to the increasing popularity of family-friendly type accommodations offered by Holiday Network, including condominiums and homes.
“Cendant’s travel business indicators show that the summer vacation is alive and well in America this year,” said Ted Deutsch, vice president of communications and public affairs for the Cendant Car Rental Group. “Our companies are committed to helping travelers book their vacations easily and to finding great lodging and car rental values when they arrive.”
Vacation package prices are per person, round-trip and include round-trip air, lodging and car rental. Percentage savings are compared to published a-la-carte pricing (travel components purchased separately).
Many of Cendant’s travel businesses are offering special rates, deals and packages that apply during the heart of the summer travel season:
- CheapTickets.com and Royal Caribbean: “New memories. New camera.” Cruising is about discovery: a new beach, a new taste, and a new pace of life. Vacationers sailing with Royal Caribbean can capture each moment with a new digital camera. Those booking select seven-day cruise sailings with Royal Caribbean through CheapTickets.com get a free HP Photosmart 435 (offer expires July 31st). For additional information visit cheaptickets.com.
- Avis: Rent one child safety seat and the second seat is free. Offer good through July 15th. Also, all premium and luxury vehicles feature free XM Satellite Radio. For additional information visit avis.com.
- Budget: Beginning mid-July, renters can pick up the Budget “Passport to Adventure,” a new brochure with family-friendly tips and activities to help entertain the children on their road trip. The brochure also includes a $25 discount on the future rental of a mini van or SUV. For additional information visit budget.com/passport.
- Cendant hotel brands: The summer “Stay More. Get More.” promotion offers hotel guests hundreds of prizes such as free meals for their children at Denny’s restaurants, 500 bonus TripRewards loyalty club points and chances to win $50,000 toward a new car and a Garmin GPS navigation system. The promotion is offered to guests who stay at one of the 6,300 hotels franchised by Cendant brands in the United States and Canada from May 1 st through September 9 th. For additional information visit: daysinn.com; howardjohnson.com ; ramada.com; super8.com; travelodge.com; wingateinns.com; amerihostinn.com; knightsinn.com; or villager.com.
- “Best Rate or Free”: Cendant’s hotel group also launched a guaranteed room rate program this summer, promising a free night to guests who book rooms directly on the Company’s hotel brand Web sites or through toll-free reservation numbers but find a lower rate on a third-party site within 24 hours.
- Holiday Network: Holiday Network is currently offering consumers a free companion airline ticket with every booking using the code TIX4NYT. For additional information visit holidaynetwork.com.
- Lodging.com: Enter for a chance to win FREE gasoline for one year!
Book a hotel (designated with the “Lowest Prices 110% Guaranteed” icon) or vacation package on Lodging.com between June 22 nd and August 31 st and automatically be entered for a chance to win FREE gasoline for one year. A winner will be selected at random each week. Hotel Bookings = 1 Entry; Vacation Package Bookings = 2 Entries. Offer is valid for stays through November 15 th. Cash value of prize is $1500. For additional information visit www.lodging.com.
- Traveler’s Advantage: Traveler’s Advantage offers a discount that saves members $46 on non-discounted room rates at the Orlando Radisson Resort Parkway. Free shuttle service to Disney World, Universal Orlando and SeaWorld, plus the Kids Eat Free program, make this a perfect family vacation destination. For additional information visit travelersadvantage.com.
About Cendant’s Travel Companies
Cendant Corporation (NYSE: CD), one of the foremost providers of travel and real estate services in the world, operates more than 30 travel companies . Cendant’s Hospitality Services Division is one of the world's leading franchisors of mid-economy market lodging brands, timeshare exchange and development companies, and European cottage rental groups. Cendant’s Travel Distribution Services Division comprises 14 distinct brands, making it one of the most geographically diverse and vertically integrated travel distribution companies in the global travel industry. Cendant’s Car Rental Group is a leader in commercial and leisure car rentals. These divisions are headquartered in Parsippany, NJ. For additional information on the Cendant travel brands visit www.cendant.com.
Cendant Media Contacts:
Cendant Car Rental Group
Cendant Travel Distribution Services
Cendant Hospitality Group
Rich Roberts (Hotel properties)
John Barrows (Vacation ownership)
Cendant Marketing Services
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